Changes of season, according to Chinese Medicine, are times when your body is more vulnerable to illness. Every year in Canberra, as if by clockwork, Anzac day heralds the beginning of cooler nights and more temperate days. Accordingly many people come down with colds and flus as the change in climate challenges the body's equilibrium and tips them over the edge into sickness.
The "Soldier On" Factor
Despite the pressure to "soldier on" when you get sick, consider the fact that the very best remedy for colds and flus is taking the time to rest and allow your body to heal naturally. Given the vast array of over-the-counter drugs that are available to reduce the symptoms of colds and flus, and the high prevalence of people choosing to have the flu vaccine, resting and letting nature takes its course it clearly not the popular option.
What are Colds and Flus?
To understand what colds and flus are and how they actually help your body maintain your health we need to revise our high school biology and understand a little more about basic cell function. Cells in your body are constantly being broken down and their materials recycled into new cells. Did you know that 98% of our body is replaced within one year. The remaining cells are replaced the following year. In fact, 10% of all cells in your body are replaced every 3 weeks, 25% of the cells are replaced every 5-6 weeks. The cells that make up our skin is totally new every thirty days.
Colds and flus are caused by a viruses. Unlike the cells of your body, viruses cannot reproduce on their own require a host cell in order to replicate themselves. At a cellular level viruses piggyback on the resources inside your own cells in order to quickly replicate more affected cells and then they destroy the host cell in a process called "lysis". The uncomfortable symptoms of colds and flus are caused by the lysis of cells creating a big load of dead cells for your body to clean up.
Viruses Help Remove the Weakest Cells
How can this be a good thing I hear you ask? Well viruses that cause colds and flus mainly infect your weakest cells, those cells burdened by excessive toxicity which are the ones most likely to allow viruses to infect them. It makes sense therefore that these are the cells you want to get rid of and to have replaced with new, healthy cells.
Colds and flus therefore are nature's way of identifying and removing damaged or weak cells that would otherwise take your immune system a lot longer to identify and remove. The symptoms that accompany colds and flus, such as fever, aches and pains and mucous discharge are indicative of the body's efforts to rid itself of the cells that have been infected, then broken down and now need to be eliminated.
So you can see how allowing the natural process of a cold or flu to unfold is actually beneficial for your wellbeing, even though it is uncomfortable and often inconvenient. It's important to rest, to stay hydrated and to allow your body the time it needs to recover. If you are in pain and it's interrupting your ability to rest or to sleep then pain killers can be a good idea. However drugs that dry up the beneficial mucous secretions or reduce fever are actually going to impair your body's ability to get rid of infected cells.